In business,changes happen every 7/10 years,they can be termed “incremental”.But when in a family business,patriarch takes a back seat,and allows his sons to run the business he has started from scratch,exactly the same way as he did,he must be living in a fool’s paradise.So, it will change.A few things get most affected, as changes appear, one of them is People Management. Earlier generations dealt with their people with a lot of compassion,care,and sometimes,emotions.People now are dealt with mostly with efficient performance as per their slated KRAs. This change is not minor,its quite significant. But this change is visible across the board and across organisations in this generation. So, people adjust.Not so long ago,credibility in a private organisation,was measured significantly on investments made to build infrastructure by the organisation.So,say,like one of my businesses,a Business School’s accreditation process was measured by how many class rooms,of what size,and minimum acreage of land,it had, it was 2.5 acres, as minimum.Having access to money was a significant criteria to accredit a BSchool.The logic given was they are distinguishing the grain from the chaff. Wow ! People like us,for whom “content” was key,struggled to get to the land and class room,requirements,and when we did that,we were investigated very minutely,even by the size of class rooms,minimum numbers,etc.,etc.
Now ALL THAT IS GONE.Students are working from home. No campus needed.It has been over a year now. So, when the student sits at home for his classes,his father is listening to the political news,and his mother is cooking in
an adjacent rooms,making lots of noise and pollution.Suddenly,the kind hearted mom,will bring a home made juice for her son or daughter,and disturb the entire focus of the child,to understand an intricate management situations.
This is how the new manager is getting ready.
Even so,life goes on……
Then comes the next phase. Patriarch and his emotional connect,gone.Son and his performance yardstick suffers hugely because of work from home,and the lack of focus to perform,so both the generations input suffers.Finally what suffers most is the business part.Because there is no job,no placements,and payment of fees for study from home,is questioned,by the parents,and the School authorities loses patience and thereby interest in running the Institution,etc. Likely scenario.
So, what suffers most as I can see in business terms,is organisation building,and thereby Institutional building,thereby a fabric of professional integrity and ethos of a corporate edifice.This will be major.For family businesses in particular,there was a certain amount of overhead kept for loyal,back office. That will be questioned by direct business owners,including the patriarch in this squeeze.The buzz word is RELEVANCE.
So,yet again the model is changing.Family businesses will be very badly affected,the corporates will be very stingy.Salaries will be impacted,and performance measurement will take a different ratio.Rich will become richer.There is a chance that percentage of poor surviving this onslaught,may become nonexistent,and so on.
But I am hopeful,a new model of governance will emerge in the next few years,it will generate all the things it did earlier,but differently. How much different,will this different structure be,is what we are all watching,and make no mistake, everyone is listening,seeing,watching, and…..waiting to incorporate the thought dictated by the pandemic,as their own thought.
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